female anna’s hummingbird on nest

Updated: Apr. 09, 2021

In late Spring, I was lucky enough to find an Anna’s hummingbird nest that had two newly hatched babies. ¬†Over the course of about 3 weeks I visited the nest often and documented the progress of the family with my camera. ¬†I took about a thousand photos over that time period and my favorite of all the shots is the one you see here. ¬†In this moment, mama is just returning to her nest of two well fed babies, both with beaks wide open in anticipation of their next meal. ¬†Mama’s back-lit wings are spread wide as she is landing, giving the photo a surreal feel. ¬†The very next day after taking this shot the babies having fledged, left the nest for good leaving me with mixed emotions. ¬†I was thrilled that the little ones had survived their days in the nest and had gone on to become contributing members of society. ¬†But at the same time I was saddened that my time with this wonderful hummingbird family was now over. I was amazed at how attached I had become to the whole experience over the three weeks I observed and photographed mama and her babies. ¬†Despite being saddened when the chapter had closed, I am thankful that I was able to witness what I had, and I am happy to share my story with you here.

female anna's hummingbird on nestCourtesy Paul Marto